Playing with two 'C' handbells by oddharmonic (flickr)Let’s see if I’ve got this straight:

Harry Reid says he supports another term for Bernanke as Fed Chair . . .

. . . through a written statement released by his office . . .

. . . after the markets close . . .

. . . on a Friday . . .

. . . though he awaits certain plans from Bernanke on how Ben’s going to do the job he already has.

Yeah, that’s a ringing endorsement.

Oh, and while Harry was issuing his ringing endorsement, Sheila Bair and the FDIC continued doing their job, seizing five more banks yesterday:  Florida, Missouri, New Mexico, Washington state, and Oregon. These five banks had combined assets of over $3.1B, deposits over $2.6B, and the FDIC estimates that the Deposit Insurance Fund will take a total hit of $531.7M. This follows the news on Tuesday that the FDIC has opened a temporary new office outside Chicago, to “manage receiverships and liquidate assets from failed institutions” in the Midwest.

But that’s OK, because Harry Reid is convinced that Bernanke is on top of things, and so is Reid himself.

Right before Reid’s office released that ringing endorsement, they released another statement commemorating NV’s unemployment rate officially topping 13% in December. UNLV researchers put the actual number closer to 25%, once you include unemployed people who are too discouraged to actively look for work, and folks who grabbed a part time job because they can’t find a fulltime one. Reid’s reaction to this news: “Now is the time to set aside partisanship and stop bickering.”

I’m sure that makes everyone feel better, and I mean everyone — the 13% of the folks in Nevada who are unemployed, the 12% who are underemployed or who have given up on being employed, and especially Ben Bernanke who doesn’t want to join the ranks of the unemployed himself.

Good luck with that, Mr. Chairman. You’ve got one week for Reid to scare up the votes.

photograph courtesy of oddharmonic